In this post, I’ll be showing you how to fix AirDrop not working, which is one of the most frustrating problems on Apple devices (including Mac, iPhone, iPod, and iPad).
A few words about AirDrop
AirDrop is a cool feature on Apple devices that allows users to transfer their data wirelessly. It requires both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi turned on to work. Bluetooth is used to detect other devices and Wi-Fi is used for transferring data. So, whenever you enable AirDrop, both will be switched on automatically.
- AirDrop doesn’t require devices to connect to the same Wi-Fi network but you’ll need to make sure the distance between them is less than 10 meters (30 feet).
- If you want to use “Contacts Only” option, iCloud login is required.
- There is no limitation on the size of the document that you want to transfer using AirDrop.
AirDrop System Requirements (Hardware and Software) for sharing content between:
AirDrop not working? Here are our troubleshooting tips
1. AirDrop not showing up in Control Center?
If you do not see the AirDrop button in Control Center, the Restrictions feature on your device may have been turned on. In this case, go to Settings > General > Restrictions. If Restrictions is enabled and AirDrop is set to OFF, it won’t show up in Control Center.
2. AirDrop Settings
When you tap on AirDrop button in Control Center, you’ll see three options: Off, Contacts Only, and Everyone. Since Contacts Only has to verify who knows who using iCloud and sometimes it ends up not working, I would highly recommend selecting the Everyone option and leaving it that way. It will make your device visible to all others.
On Mac, launch Finder and click on AirDrop from the sidebar. You can adjust AirDrop visibility by clicking the link next to ‘Allow me to be discovered by’ in the AirDrop window, and then choose Everyone also.
3. Make sure the receiving device’s screen is on
AirDrop will terminate automatically if your device’s screen is off. So don’t let your device go to sleep. If you’re trying to use AirDrop from an iOS device to your Mac, opening AirDrop screen will put your Mac in an AirDrop-ready state as well, sometimes this simple act may fix the issue.
4. Toggle Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
- Open up Control Center
- Turn off Bluetooth and WiFi for a little while
- Then turn them back on
Try to connect again to see if it helps. You can also tap the Airplane button to turn off all wireless connections at once and tap it again to turn everything back on.
5. Force Restart and Reset Network Settings
- Force Restart: Press and hold the Home button and the Power button at the same time. Keep holding until you see the Apple logo, this is how we do a force restart.
- If the method above doesn’t fix the issue of AirDrop not working, try Reset network settings: Navigate to Settings > General > Reset > select Reset Network Settings. You’ll have to rejoin to every Bluetooth and Wi-Fi network you’ve been using.
6. Update firmware
If you’ve faced the issue of AirDrop not working after upgrading to a new version of iOS, chances are the problem is all about the new firmware installed on your device. Apple will release updates soon to fix bugs, so head to Settings > General > Software Update to check if a new update is available for installing.